Owners and operators of the state’s agricultural businesses now have more agricultural economists to consult through the Mississippi State University Extension Service. James Barnes and Brian Williams are located on MSU’s main campus in Starkville. Larry Falconer is based out of MSU’s Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville.

“My goal has always been to serve the needs of our clientele,” said Gary Jackson, director of MSU’s Extension Service. “Agricultural economists who have a variety of specialties can offer the kind of comprehensive information our clients have come to expect from Extension but can also add a new depth to that information.

“Dr. Williams and Dr. Falconer are agricultural commodities experts who will provide marketing strategies for Mississippi producers. Dr. Barnes is a community and economic development expert who will support rural Mississippi communities, small businesses and local government leaders,” he said.

Williams specializes in commodity marketing of beef cattle, corn, milo, soybeans and wheat, as well as value-added management and marketing. He received a bachelor’s degree in natural resources and a master’s degree in agricultural economics from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. He earned his doctorate in agricultural economics at Oklahoma State University.

Falconer focuses on agricultural finance, marketing, risk management, and farm and ranch management. He joined the MSU Extension Service after serving for 24 years as an agricultural economist for Texas A&M in Corpus Christi. He obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Oklahoma State and his doctorate from Texas A&M, all in agricultural economics.

Barnes serves as state specialist in economic and community development. His primary responsibilities relate to agricultural contracting in supply chains and clusters, rural healthcare systems and broadband Internet technologies in rural areas. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural economics at Oklahoma State University. He earned his doctorate in agricultural economics at the University of Missouri.